I have become much fonder of a little town called Manhattan than I ever thought I would. Most of that has to do with Josh. It's where we first started our relationship, where we had our first kiss, and it's the place I spent many weekends driving to from Lincoln while we were dating. However, after years of proudly wearing red and cheering for the Huskers the unthinkable happened; my brother decided to play football at Kansas State in Manhattan and I was going to need some purple. At first, it was very strange and I refused to wear anything unless it specifically said Kansas State FOOTBALL. Now, he's a senior and while I still own more Nebraska stuff, my K-State apparel has grown quite nicely. While my affection for Manhattan and all things purple has grown over the last few years so has the town and it's restaurant selection.
My brother, Travis called me a couple months ago and told me he ate at this new place called Local food & friends and I was going to love it. He said the name is Local because they use all their ingredients from local vendors and support the local community/farmers. Secondly, ALL proceeds go to a local charity, which changes each month. Like me, you are probably wondering what kind of owner can open up shop and send all this proceeds to charity. You may have heard of a company called GTM Sportswear. You know, the one lots of people get their college game day apparel from, but more importantly, where the majority of rec leagues buy their uniforms. The owner of GTM lives in Manhattan and he started Local. In fact, my other brother, Tyler, told me many of the vegetables actually come from his land! So cool.
Unless you live under a rock, you know college football started yesterday. (FINALLY!) K-State didn't play until 6 p.m. so I planned it all out. First stop, Local right at 11 so I would be hungry by late afternoon for the tailgate food. I picked Tyler up and we were on our way.
I highly recommend this place if you are ever in Manhattan. The restaurant is nicely put together on the interior, with a wonderful open prep/kitchen area. Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture, but they also have a stone oven for pizzas and the flames were blazing. We were welcomed right when we walked in by the chef and he asked if we had been in before. Tyler has been a couple times, but when I told him it was my first visit he explained how they make everything fresh from local ingredients and all proceeds this month will go to The Boys and Girls Club. He was very friendly and it was a great first impression. We proceeded to the counter where you order and I had a tough time making my selection, but I went with the veggie burger and a side of vegetables. Tyler chose the buffalo chicken wrap, but in the past had ordered the burger and said it was delicious.
The menu is nothing fancy; salads, pizza, wraps and burgers, but FAR from "bar food" atmosphere or preparation. The chef described it as, "Simple American food prepared with the freshest ingredients for the best taste". After my first visit to Local I couldn't agree more with his description. I will be visiting this place again during this football season!
Here's a link to their website if you're interested in viewing their full menu:
Open area showing the preparation of the food ordered.
Interior of restaurant...keep in mind we got there right when they opened so that's why it's so empty.
Sign right when we walked in telling us the charity for the month.
Tyler's buffalo chicken wrap. He said it was tasty, but they weren't messing around with their buffalo sauce-it was spicy! I took a bite and agreed it was spicy, but we both thought it was great.
My veggie burger and side of vegetables. Both were great! Vegetables were perfectly cooked and still crunchy. Nobody wants soggy vegetables!
My burger had black beans, carrots, and red peppers in it topped with pepper jack cheese, mayo, tomato and avocado. I ate every last bite.
And, just for fun here's Tyler, my other brother Trevor, my mom, and me toasting to the season while tailgating.
Josh, me and Tyler visiting some friends' tailgate before the game. Great way to start my Labor Day weekend.